Submarine Force Establishes New Additional Qualification Designation
04 February 2021
NAVAL SUPPORT ACTIVITY HAMPTON ROADS, Va --
Commander, Submarine Forces (SUBFOR), established a new undersea warfare tactics instructor additional qualification designation (AQD) to identify and track top talent officers, Jan. 26.
The new designation, ST1, will be awarded to officers who serve in billets requiring tactics prowess, development, assessment, and training. Officers must serve at qualifying commands and be recommended by their commanding officer based on superior performance to receive the new AQD.
“This new designation is critical to adding advanced warfighting recognition throughout the Submarine Force,” said Vice Adm. Daryl Caudle, commander, SUBFOR. “By tracking and effectively managing our warfare experts, we can ensure the U.S. maintains a decisive advantage in the undersea domain in an era of Great Power Competition.”
Prior to the establishment of the designation, the Submarine Force was only able to track performance of officers through their officer data cards and fitness reports. This new AQD will help streamline identification of tactical and technical expertise.
“With the ST1 designation now in place, the Submarine Force has the opportunity to effectively shape our Force with top talent by placing an increased emphasis on advanced knowledge of undersea warfare tactics and exceptional instructional skills,” Caudle added.
As the Submarine Force continues to evolve to ensure it maintains undersea superiority, submarine officers must be prepared to adapt to adversary advancements. ST1 is one tool to identify those officer best able to keep pace.
“Great Power Competition has placed emphasis on effective warfighting throughout a submarine officer’s career, in addition to maintaining safety during peace time missions” said Cmdr. James Wendler, commander, Submarine Force Atlantic’s force training officer. “Establishment of the warfare tactics instructor AQD is just one part of this return to a warfighting mindset.”
The mission of the Submarine Force is to execute the Department of the Navy’s mission in and from the undersea domain. In addition to lending added capacity to naval forces, the Submarine Force, in particular, is expected to leverage those special advantages that come with undersea concealment to permit operational, deterrent and combat effects that the Navy and the nation could not otherwise achieve.
The Submarine Force and supporting organizations constitute the primary undersea arm of the Navy. Submarines and their crews remain the tip of the undersea spear.